On Mauritius’ “feast of vocations”, Cardinal Calls on Parents to Be “wise gardeners”

A poster announcing the July 16 Feast of Vocations and the 32nd Episcopal anniversary of Maurice Cardinal Piat. Credit: Poort Louis Diocese

On the occasion marking the gift of vocations among the people of God in Mauritius (feast of vocations) celebrated Sunday, July 16, Maurice Cardinal Piat has called upon parents in the Indian Ocean Island nation to be “wise gardeners.”

In his homily during the July 16 Eucharistic celebration that also marked his 32nd Episcopal anniversary, Cardinal Piat said, “When we pray for vocations, we mustn't forget to also pray for those whom Christ calls to be spouses and parents. This too is an important vocation in the Church.”

He explained, “The family is the garden in which all the different vocations germinate. And parents are called to be wise gardeners who prepare the ground so that the word of the Lord, the call he makes to each person, can germinate in the hearts of their children and bear fruit, whether they choose to become priests or nuns, fathers or mothers.”

The member of the Congregation of the Holy Spirit (Spiritans) said, “Today at this feast, we give thanks for all those parents who discreetly accompany their children on their journey of faith.”

“Let us pray for them, that they may find joy in this great service to the Church and the world,” he added, and implored for “young people as they enter adulthood.”


“Life is indeed the greatest gift God has given you through your parents. Now it's in your hands, and it's up to you to decide what you want to do with it,” Cardinal Piat who retired as Local Ordinary of Port Louis on May 19 told the youth during the event attended by hundreds of people at Thabor.

He continued, “Never forget that in your search, Christ is there by your side, like an older brother ready to help and enlighten you in your search.”

The person of Jesus Christ is “not there to help you succeed in life, to have lots of money, success, and prestige,” the 81-year-old Cardinal cautioned, adding, “Rather, he's here to help you make a success of your life, your life as a man, a woman, in today's world, with all the possibilities it offers and all the challenges it poses.”

He continued, “Whether you choose marriage, the Religious Life, or the life of a Priest, Christ alone can give you a successful life, because He alone can teach us to love to the end, to love to the point of giving your life.”

“Only He can give you the joy of loving like Him, by giving yourself totally. And it is this joy that fills the human heart,” Cardinal Piat, who started his Episcopal Ministry in May 1991 emphasized.

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He continued, “Christ beckons you; He calls you today because he loves you and is very interested in your projects. But he will never force you. He respects you too much for that. He's always there for you, reaching out to you with great tenderness and waiting patiently for your response. Let Christ look at you, don't be afraid.”

“Let Him lead you. Whether you choose marriage, Religious Life, or the life of a Priest, Christ will give you an open, generous heart, ready to love to the end, a heart that He will fill with his joy,” Cardinal Piat said during the July 16 event.